Transformation begins: 15 photos of Red Wings arena, M-1 Rail development

M-1 Woodward_9504
The red containers form the shape of the arena and will be the site of Thursday’s groundbreaking.

Woodward Avenue near downtown is almost unrecognizable.

That’s because crews are building the $140 million M-1 rail for streetcars and laying groundwork for a new $450 million Red Wings arena.

On Thursday, crews will break ground for the arena.

Here’s what construction and preparation look like now. All photos by Steve Neavling

Redwings arena_9356
The footprint of the new Red Wings arena.
Red Wings_9566
A recently painted mural for the arena groundbreaking.
Red Wings_9565
Artists work on one of several murals for the Red Wings arena groundbreaking.
Red Wings arena_9360
The red containers mark the spot of the arena construction.
Red Wings_9559
Crews set up for the groundbreaking. 
Red Wings_9570
This will be the heart of the Red Wings arena and adjacent entertainment district along Woodward.
M-1 Woodward_9616
Some commentary.
M-1 Woodward_9574
Crews are breaking up Woodward to prepare for M-1 rails.
M-1 Woodward_9578
Woodward is closed at Grand Circus Park.
M-1 Woodward_9584
Looking south on Woodward.
M-1 Woodward_9523
Some of the M-1 rails are stored along Woodward near the new arena site.
M-1 Woodward_9501
A lot of construction equipment lines Woodward.
M-1 Woodward_9498
The footprint of the M-1 Rail, looking south on Woodward.
Woodward near Mack Avenue.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • John Smith

    Nice. The illustrated guide to Detroit Bankruptcy 2.0.

  • Billy Blake

    The construction company putting that rail down better be quick.Before the scrappers get a hold of it.

  • Fernando

    dope pics Steve, can’t wait to see the progress in this part of town.